SCHOOLCHILDREN in Worthing have become twitchers to help the RSPB document bird life in the area.
Pupils at Broadwater First and Middle School, English Martyrs Primary School, Palatine School, Vale First and Middle School and younger children from Happy Days Childcare have been keeping a record of the birds they see in their surroundings.
The survey is the biggest of its kind in the UK and, this year, the RSPB is marking 10 years of its Big Schools’ Birdwatch.
Sophie McCallum, from the RSPB, said: “For 10 years, youngsters have joined in counting the birds in their school grounds.
“As well as contributing to our understanding of the changes in bird numbers, Big Schools’ Birdwatch does a fantastic job of inspiring thousands of children about nature.”
Each school spends one hour counting birds and then fills in the survey.
Susie Fordham, year-one teacher at English Martyrs Primary School, in Derwent Drive, Goring, said pupils were very excited to take part in the birdwatch survey and made their own binoculars out of toilet rolls.
Since its launch in 2002, the survey has grown in popularity, and last year, the RSPB introduced for the first time the Little Schools’ Birdwatch, designed for the under-fives.
Last year, 26 schools in the county took part in the survey, with a total of 830 West Sussex schoolchildren counting birds.
Last year in West Sussex, the blackbird was found to be the most common visitor to playgrounds, with house sparrows coming in second place and blue tits in third.